The cloud options that you chose to modernize your current systems and infrastructure should address the cost, security, scalability, and agility challenges with your existing legacy systems. Equally important is that your choice of Cloud meets you where you are in your own innovation journey.
Whether you need to decommission or consolidate on-premises data centers, migrate existing VMs as is or upgrade them to containers, or transform applications into cloud services – your chosen Cloud should facilitate the kind of transformation you are looking for.
Let’s decode the approach, characteristics, and steps to migrate to a custom Cloud which performs your tough infrastructure jobs in the background without impeding any of your core work in the foreground.
I.Choosing the right cloud migration strategy
Migration to the Cloud is not a one-size-fits-all. You will need to assess and understand your current infrastructure, applications, and workloads (Here is a sample assessment report with an objective infrastructure analysis to help draft a successful Cloud strategy). Based on these considerations and more inputs and business needs, the approaches vary, as follows –
- Lift & Shift
This approach is for mass (or even small) data center scale migrations with minimal architecture changes to your workloads. It doesn’t need bespoke optimizations and saves time and money. Once shifted, your workloads and apps will be running on the scalable Cloud. For example, migrating on-prem physical servers or VMs as is to Cloud.
- Application change
It is possible that your applications can’t be migrated as-is due to technology limitations, such as unusual hardware or software components that aren’t supported under virtualization or unique networking configurations that can’t be replicated. Or you could have applications that will achieve significant improvement in performance, cost, and operating efficiency with some cloud-oriented changes.
This approach helps to encapsulate several key challenges and realizes various modernization opportunities. It offers enhancements to your traditional on-prem applications by rebuilding them on Cloud.
Examples include converting a physical server or VM into a Kubernetes container or modifying some of the legacy components to cloud-based services post-migration.
You could be in a hybrid environment involving operating across a combination of on-prem, private cloud, or public cloud environments. In this approach, you don’t move all your workloads to Cloud but choose the ones to move based on legacy app requirements, compliance requirements, or more. It helps in managing the on-prem and Cloud workloads without the burden of duplicative management overhead.
II. Identify the right Cloud platform based on your innovation strategy
The Cloud you choose for migration should accelerate deployments and ensure success in your projects. You should be brought to Cloud quickly with the most cost-effective and easy migration tools. Choose a Cloud which offers you the following –
- Accelerated Time-to-Cloud: Quick and easy migration of workloads, so that you are able to take advantage of the innovation benefits sooner.
- Interoperability and Business Continuity: Regardless of whether you move one workload or all workloads, your Cloud should ensure your business remains humming with solutions. You should be able to move VMs at scale with little disruption and connect your on-prem or other Cloud environments seamlessly.
- Secure: The Cloud should offer purpose-built hardware and services which have built-in security.
- High Performance: Your Cloud should offer a global and private network to ensure your workloads run fast across all your locations.
- Cost-effective: Pricing should help you save money right away.
Once the right Cloud is identified, you can start migration with your managed service provider.
III. Iterate the steps to a robust infrastructure
Migrating to Cloud is not a linear process which ends with migration. Rather it is a process of frequent monitoring and feedback to build, layer-by-layer, a robust infrastructure to support your operations and growth for a long time to come. This process ensures that each of your unique challenges are addressed and your infrastructure is configured for immense efficiency.
Your managed service provider travels with you in each of the following steps to help you innovate and transform your business, for you to eventually emerge as the disruptor, not the disrupted.
The first step is always assessing your current Infrastructure. It is based on this assessment, that you can build a Cloud strategy and define a high level architecture with your managed service provider.
This is the ground planning where the outline for modernization and migration is drafted based on your business requirements.
This step puts the plan to action and initiates application & infrastructure modernization.
In this step, your managed service provider constantly monitors your operations and optimizes your whole infrastructure after every iteration.
Migrating to a Cloud is not just an IT decision but a financial and operational decision as well
That is why you shouldn’t migrate to any Cloud or adopt any approach just because everyone else is. Your ability to scale, deliver innovation, and craft immersive customer experiences directly depends on how enabling your infrastructure is.
Hear this directly from Whirlpool, one of our biggest customers in Europe. They built a solution entirely on the Google Cloud platform.
The robust Google Cloud Platform has given them benefits on cost, ease of use, and high availability and accessibility.